This past weekend brought many organized birding events to the city of Los Angeles. Audubon chapters from around LA coordinated the second annual Bird Day LA: a slew of bird/nature walks, photography classes, and a bar meet-up, all aimed to get the public excited about bird watching, nature, and conservation. Coincidentally, Audubon California decided to hold the first-ever Brown Pelican Survey on the same day. Due to my hectic school and work schedule, I decided to focus my time on attending this important bird count.
For those who live in London, you can now tweet @PigeonAir to have a pigeon task force dispatched to your neighborhood to fly through the sky and test the quality of the air. Plume Labs has teamed up with a local owner of racing pigeons, whose birds are outfitted with tiny sensors that take readings of ozone, volatile compounds, and nitrogen dioxide.
For the past 116 years the Audubon has organized the annual Christmas Bird Count where groups all over the country gather between December 14th and January 5th to count birds in a particular area.
Like many people do on bird outings, the number of species spotted and how many of each species is recorded and submitted to eBird to help scientists monitor population fluctuations and migration patterns. The Christmas Bird Count bird census was started to replace the tradition of the “side hunt” where men would go out and hunt as many birds in a day as possible.
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and eBird have been hard at work bringing improvements to the online bird checklist site, eBird. Their latest update on November 3rd brings the ability to attach photos and audio clips to bird checklists. This rich media becomes a part of the Macaulay Library, which acts an a permanent archive for eBird data.
Getting a job is hard. Thousands of millennials graduate college each year with nothing else to show for it than a piece of paper. A diploma no longer gets you a full-time job right out of college. The job market is tough, especially in the wildlife field. There is a finite amount of jobs for a growing pool of applicants. This doesn’t mean you can’t get there, it just means you have to put in a little more effort beyond your time spent at college!
Here are a quick 5 tips on breaking into the biology profession:
Good news! Parakeets might just be able to respond to how you feel!
Yes, a recent study in the journal Animal Cognition suggests budgerigars are capable of certain aspects of affective empathy. Let’s start with a little background on empathy: Over the years of psychologists conceptualizing empathy, researchers have basically agreed that there are two distinct components at play: cognitive empathy and affective empathy.
The day starts out by waking up to the sound of geese flying back to marsh after spending the night feeding in nearby rice fields. A day in the life of a waterfowl biologist is never dull; work is almost purely dictated by the birds themselves. There are two main seasons in California’s Sacramento Valley: the breeding season and the wintering season.
The waterfowl present during breeding season consist almost exclusively of Mallard, Gadwall, a handful of Cinnamon Teal, and a few other stragglers that didn’t feel like flying all the way up to Alaska.